Telling the Truth

connecting the dots of my life

Tag: Faculty Wife

Faculty Wife | Part 19 of 19


Today’s photos bid a fond farewell to my Faculty Wife series (fall 1969 through July 1973). Here’s our son in 1970, sound asleep shortly after we brought our daughter home from the hospital. D’s Mom gave him Big Bear, just after his sister was born. He was an instant hit. He and FuFu, hiding beneath Big Bear’s head, always understood and agree with our son, not with us.

Every now and then our daughter got to play with FuFu. Here she is in 1971, intent on getting into a doll bed with FuFu who has just fallen out. You can see FuFu is already wearing out from all the love. Note: I didn’t make or buy the ruffled dress. It was a gift.

1972 Mar Sherry with Foofoo trying out a bed too small 2

In 1972 we traveled to Ft. Smith, Arkansas for a small family reunion with D’s Mom. It was held at her Dad’s home. Here’s a photo of the women and children who came: D’s great-aunt, his Mom, me, his sister, one of his aunts, our son and daughter. Four generations dressed in multiple fashions and hair styles. The three oldest women are now gone. D’s aunt is holding her camera.

1971 Sep Aunt Edith Edith Cathy Elouise Dorothy with Scott and Sherry in Arkansas

That day we went to a park, and our son got to take a train ride with Grammy! Great fun for both, as you can see.

1971 Sep Grammy Edith and Scott on a train

Now we’re back in South Carolina, in our back yard. It’s summer 1972 and unbearably hot. This calls for lots of picnics in the back yard in the late afternoon. Here’s our son taking a supper-snack break from playing outside.

1972 Scott and the Got Milk ad origin

Note the beautiful blue-flowered casual dining plate. Also the price of bread–4 loaves for $1.00! And don’t miss our teak-handled salad servers. A wedding gift. We still have them and I still use them. One more thing. I see our son has dirt in his elbow creases and generally all over himself. Possibly from the sand box in the back corner of the yard–which you can’t see. I don’t know what those pipes are on the ground; I think D was putting something together–perhaps the swing set.

It’s early summer 1973, our last summer in South Carolina. We’re down in Savannah for a last visit with my Mom and Dad. Of course we had to bid farewell to Tybee Beach. Always a hit! And always A-OK!

1973 Jul Beach Joy2
1973 Jul Different depths for different ages at the beach

In July 1973  my parents, plus Diane and Clay with their first son arrive for a last visit before we move. Here we are, standing around in the front yard.

1973 Jul Diane Clay and Chris Eileen Sherry and Elouise at Columbia SC house

Short skirts are in! So are shift-like dresses. I made mine, as well as our daughter’s outfit. I’m certain Diane made hers. It’s shocking to realize that only 9 years earlier the Bible College wouldn’t allow women’s knees to show. Nor did they allow women to wear shorts or blue jeans.

Finally, for the record, someone (Diane? My Dad? D’s camera on a tripod?) took an informal family picture of us in the back yard. Was this a way of marking the welcome end of our cultural isolation from the rest of the world? Actually, D says we were already one hip family! I totally agree. California, here we come!

1973 Jul Family portrait getting hip

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 16 November 2015
Photo credit: DAFraser, and whoever took the last photo

Faculty Wife | Part 18

Pasadena toward Mt. Wilson

A crystal clear day in sunny California, looking toward Mt. Wilson and towers

Spring 1973. It’s settled! D enters seminary in the fall. We’re moving to sunny, sometimes smoggy southern California! I can’t say I’m sad Read the rest of this entry »

Faculty Wife | Part 17

Nouthetic Counseling - guardthyheart

This is one of the more bizarre things that has happened to me. Somewhat like My First Boss. I didn’t see it coming and I could scarcely believe it was happening. Read the rest of this entry »

Faculty Wife | Part 16

1972 Oct Columbia Bible College Sherry and Scott not to be fed

What’s a Mom to do? I empathize with park authorities who post signs like this!

Spring 1973. Things are heating up. Most days I’m not on the Bible college campus. I come when I need to. Usually for social events or occasional appointments. Now that our son and daughter are older, Read the rest of this entry »

Faculty Wife | Part 15

1972 Oct Cowboys Blocks and Trucks

…Keeping the home fires burning. That’s my hat, not yours! October 1972

By summer 1972 D knew things might not work out for him at the Bible College. I wasn’t sure they would work for me, either. Read the rest of this entry »

Faculty Wife | Part 14

Race of the Year! D on red tricycle with other contestants, Bible College 1972

By spring 1972, the stress of being a mother and the reality of being back at the Bible College had worn me down. My depression returned.

D was struggling with the cultural climate of the Bible College, especially its assumptions about the place and role of students. The president talked about making changes, yet it seemed not much had changed since our days at the Bible College. The culture was still authoritarian and hierarchical (male priority; female submission).

No one wore a uniform. Yet there seemed to be an attitudinal uniform with key components that signaled whether you were ‘submissive’ or ‘rebellious.’ Sometimes it was as simple as how much makeup a woman chose to use. Other times it was about hair.

For example, the length of men’s hair. That included how much hair he had on his face—beard, sideburns, mustache, plus ponytail or anything over his collar or down his back. Clean-shaven was the goal. And neat. Nothing that would call attention to oneself. D pushed the boundaries a bit with his hair, though that was the least of his worries. You already know about the tie.

Then one day Jesus people started applying to come to the Bible College. Hair and all. Instead of welcoming them as they were, the men were told to cut their hair; men and women were told to ditch their street clothes for proper attire. D and others took up their cause; eventually they were allowed to enroll.

Then there was the student newspaper incident. The Bible College wasn’t in the habit of requesting student feedback or opinions about much of anything. So a group of students, male and female, decided to publish their own campus newspaper. They called it “Little People Think.” They asked D for his counsel, and later for his help.

As a female graduate of the Bible College, I could only agree with them. I also agreed to write an article for the first edition. Was I nervous? A bit. It seems this was my first official article telling the truth publicly.

I wrote about assumptions and expectations professors and others seemed to have about women. Though I didn’t call myself a feminist back then, I was fed up with the second-class status status required of women students. My article was included in the first edition of the newspaper.

The students wanted to distribute this via student mailboxes, just like the official student newspaper. Their solution? They asked D if he would put them in the boxes. He had a key to the mailroom and was a faculty member. No one would suspect him unless they saw him in the area at 4 am or so!

The alternative paper was furtively distributed to all campus mailboxes. No one knew where it came from or how it got there.

The administration wasn’t happy, but they didn’t demand a recall. Strangely, no one ever said a word to me about my article, which included my name. They did, however, make sure copies of the next edition never made it into student mailboxes or were distributed on campus.

Then there was the 1972  presidential election. D and I put a bumper sticker in the back window of our car. We were for McGovern/Shriver, who ran against Nixon/Agnew. It remained there for less than half a day!

Within hours of arriving on campus for his morning classes, D was told to remove the bumper sticker  immediately. The president didn’t want members of the board to arrive on campus and find a Democratic bumper sticker on a faculty member’s car. It seems freedom of speech didn’t exist in the same way for everyone at the Bible College.

In the midst of this I began thinking about ways to get help for my exhausted body, emotions and spirit. I felt trapped.

To be continued….

P.S. Yes, D won the tricycle race!

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 13 Oct 2015
Photo credit: who knows? I don’t!

Faculty Wife | Part 13

1972 Sep Elouise with Scott and Sherry in the art museum2

Hmmm . . . . Are we happy yet?  Rodin’s Thinker at Getty Museum , 1972

I’m sitting here looking at the title I gave this series: Faculty Wife. Was I a Faculty Wife during the four short years we were back at the Bible College? If not, Read the rest of this entry »

Faculty Wife | Part 12

1974 Mr. Rogers event ND

Time to get back to being a Faculty Wife! In case you don’t remember, we’re in the early 1970s. I’m home alone most weekdays with our baby daughter and toddler son.

I don’t know Read the rest of this entry »

Faculty Wife | Part 11

1970 Scott enjoying Big Bear's box thoughtfully


Handle with Care

I’ve never been an extrovert. I have, though, witnessed insensitivity toward the feelings and unpredictable responses of extroverted children who don’t have skin made of iron.

Surprisingly, our extroverted USA culture Read the rest of this entry »

Faculty Wife | Part 10 – Photos

1970 ND Scott's Bowl cut.2

I got lost today looking at old family photos from late 1970. So I decided to take you with me! Our headliner is Son’s first professional style hair cut. Read the rest of this entry »

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